Remember When Jeannie C. Riley Socked It To The Harper Valley PTA?

 Jeannie C. RileyEver want to tell some nosy, busybodies to kindly mind their own business? Well, the song “Harper Valley PTA” is the song that does just that.  You’ll be applauding this fearless mom by the end of it.

“Harper Valley PTA” was a huge international hit single for the country singer Jeannie C. Riley in 1968.  At the time, Jeannie was working as a secretary for a music label in Nashville, Tennessee while she was trying to get her singing career started.  After work one Friday night, she headed over to meet her producer at the recording studio to listen to a song that he thought would be perfect for her.

Her producer was absolutely right – the song was perfect for her.  After only fifteen minutes of recording, Jeannie already had the first tape finished of the song in the studio.  “Harper Valley PTA” quickly became her signature song and made her an overnight sensation.

The song immediately became a hit and ended up selling over six million copies.  Jeannie’s version of the song reached the #1 spot for both the Billboard Hot 100 chart as well as the U.S. Hot Country Singles chart – the first time this was ever accomplished by a woman.  This record was not broken again until Dolly Parton’s song “9 to 5” in 1981.

The song was a phenomenon which led to Riley making country music history in 1969 as the first female vocalist to have her own major network variety special, “Harper Valley U.S.A.” Then in 1978 there was “Harper Valley PTA” the motion picture, and in 1981 “Harper Valley PTA” the television show.

This clip is a snippet of a scene from the 1978 movie of the same name that was inspired by Jeannie’s song.  The movie starred Barbara Eden as a young widowed mother who was struggling to raise her daughter alone and just enjoy life.  One day her daughter brings home a letter from the school’s PTA board which criticizes the way she dresses and is raising her daughter.

Outraged by the hypocrisy of the PTA board, the mother marches down to the PTA meeting, which just happened to be that very afternoon.  She stands up in the meeting and demands to address the board.  She dishes out some dirt on each of the board members and quickly puts them in their place.

You’re going to love watching this clip and the song play out together.  Putting self-righteous hypocrites in their place is something each one of us wishes we had the courage to do.

Share this nostalgic blast from the past with a friend who will remember Jeannie C. Riley.
Remember When Jeannie C. Riley Socked It To The Harper Valley PTA?